The current situation of Osaka Airport

As of May 2020, the Government of Japan has lifted only a few restrictions that come to international and domestic traveling. All citizens are advised not to use public transport, stay at their residencies as well as work from home. Kansai airport is one of the biggest airports in Japan carrying almost 30 million passengers every year. Kansai airport opened in 1994 in order to reduce overcrowding of the Itami airport, today Kansai is a hub for 6 major airlines. Today Kansai airport welcomes many domestic flights as well as thousands of tourists from all over the world.

What is the main airport in Osaka?

The Osaka International airport or also known as Itami airport was opened in 1939 and it was and still is the primary airport for the Kansai region. In the ’90s due to the overcrowding Kansai airport took over the international flights and today Osaka airport mostly focuses on domestic flights. The Osaka airport is a hub for Japan and All Nipon airways and it handles around 300 landings every day and most of the domestic flights operate to Haneda, Naha, and Sendai airports.

Kansai airport opened in 1994, it is located on an artificial island in the middle of the Osaka Bay. The airport consists of two terminals and it is a hub for – All Nippon Airways, FedEx Express, Japan Airlines, Jetstar Japan, Nippon cargo airlines, and Peach. You can reach Terminal 1 from Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe either by – JR Haruka limited express train, JR airport rapid train, Nankai railways, by bus, ferry, or taxi. The airport is open 24 hours and both terminals have restaurants, stores, and even showers and hotels.

How has the coronavirus affected the airport?

Osaka Airport handles mostly domestic flights when Kansai Airport handles international flights that require more attention and stricter safety measures. All travelers must undergo the basic security checks and additionally due to the virus outbreak everyone must go through a thermographic screening at the entrance of the airport. Thermo screening measures the body temperature without a person to person contact, the temperature is shown on a screen, those who have a body temperature above 37,5 will be asked not to travel and immediately referred to the nearest health center. Those who have arrived from abroad must quarantine in specially designated areas for at least two weeks and stay away from public transport. The airport premises are regularly disinfected to avoid further spread of the virus.

Previously Kansai airport has been planning to invest around 900 million dollars for the safety enhancement for natural disasters, increase capacity, rearrange layouts, and modernize their technology. Unfortunately due to the virus outbreak, most of the reconstructions and modernization plans have been postponed the administration is now focusing on maintaining the premises and screening the arriving tourists.

What safety measures have been implemented?

Travelers who have stayed in the following countries in the last 14 days will be denied permission to enter Japan: Brunei, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Viet Nam, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, United States, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Panama, Peru, Saint Christopher and Nevis, Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Kosovo, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Vatican, Bahrain, Iran, Israel, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Mauritius and Morocco.

There might be exceptional cases when the traveler will be able to enter Japan after passing the PCR test. Those who have arrived from the countries mentioned above must self-quarantine for at least 14 days at one of the designated quarantine points.

When will the airport open for tourists?

The entrance in Japan has also been affected by the departure countries, in some cases, the tourists are not able to board the flight or the flights have been canceled in their home countries. Due to the lack of travelers, airports have decreased the amount of international and domestic flights.

Unfortunately, foreign passport holders are not allowed to enter Japan at the moment, only those who must travel for emergencies are allowed to board their flights and later on after arrival quarantine in the specially designated areas for at least 2 weeks. Japan is allowing humanitarian flights, flights from specific countries as well as necessary cargo flights and of course Japanese citizens returning to their homes. Those who are still traveling to Japan must have a place to stay booked in advance to self-quarantine as well as private transportation from the airport to their accommodation. Upon arrival, travelers must undergo health tests and directed to a special waiting area until the results are ready and the traveler is allowed to leave.